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This Week on DVD & Blu-ray (04-16-13)

April 19, 2013
“Django, you uppity son of a…!” – straight from the mouth of Samuel L. Jackson and the twisted mind of Quentin Tarantino, comes “Django Unchained“, the latest Oscar-winning film from the writer/director, which finally makes its way to on DVD/Blu-ray/streaming. The historical revenge fantasy film was nominated for Best Picture and appropriately won for Best Original Screenplay and earned Christoph Waltz  another Best Supporting Actor award (although his was more of a lead role), a most deserved win. Some consider “Django” to be the best yet from QT, while others were offended (surprise!) or rolled their eyes issues with the director’s indulgences (surprise again!). Sure, it’s a little all over the place, but it is nevertheless entertaining. Personally, I’m looking forward to seeing the film again, primarily for Waltz’s delicious line delivery. What else is out this week?
The movie with THE most inane title of the year has to be “The Haunting in Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia” an unnecessary sequel released earlier this year directed by Tom Elkins, who served as editor on the first movie released in 2009. Didn’t see the first one and no desire to start now. But really, let’s just ponder the fact that someone actually received a wage to come up with that title, which is as bad as “The Last Exorcism 2”.
Emilio Estevez finally has a movie that gets the Criterion treatment! Can you belive I’ve never seen 1984’s “Repo Man“, the cult classic directed by Alex Cox (“Sid & Nancy”), making his feature debut. When it was released, it seemed Universal didn’t know what to do with it. Then the punk soundtrack (Iggy Pop, The Circle Jerks, Black Flag and Suicidal Tendencies) became a hit and then, after word-of-mouth, the movie earned a cult following on VHS and midnight theatrical showings. I’m looking forward to y first exposure to the film. For whatever reason, I just never caught up with it. It has Harry Dean Stanton, so that’s a plus right there.
Here’s one I’d never heard of….Shout Factory is releasing “A Monster in Paris“, an animated feature directed by Bibo Bergeron (“Shark Tale” and “Road to El Dorado”), about a shy projectionist who finds himself tangled in a series of events that include singing monkeys, mad scientists and giant flies! It’s inspired by both The Phantom of the Opera and Georges Feydeau’s A Flea in Her Ear and seems to have no relation to “A Cat in Paris” other than the location. It seems to have the same whimsical tone though, which is a plus. It may not be what people are used to where animation is concerned, but that’s a great thing, especially for American viewers who arent’ exposed to other animation outside of the big two: Disney/Pixar and DreamWorks.

Speaking of Disney – I’m really disappointed in them. My whole family is. We’ve thoroughly enjoyed going to see the theatrical releases of the Disneynature documentaries each year that coincide with Earth Day. Well, this year there is no theatrical release (we’ll have to wait for next year’s “Bears”), instead we have “Wings of Life“, arriving on Blu-ray this Tuesday. So, that’s one less family-friendly film in theaters. Meryl Streep narrates this look at pollination (originally named “Pollen” in the UK), believe it or not, and how creatures like bees, bats, butterflies, and hummingbirds interact with flowers to fulfill this vitally important process. Okay, so the subject matter isn’t as grand as other Disneynature films like “Oceans“,African Cats” or as humanizing as “Chimpanzee“, but it certainly sounds fascinating. Plus, it’s directed by Louis Schwartzberg, a specialist in high-speed nature footage, who shot scenes for 1982’s “Koyaanisqatsi” – so, it should look stunning!

That’s enough for this week. Links to previous reviews will be highlighted below. Enjoy the Rundown….

  • A Haunting in Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • A Monster in Paris (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • A Whisper to a Roar (DVD)
  • At the Gate of the Ghost (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • The Colombian Connection (DVD)
  • Counting Cars: Season 1 (DVD)
  • Disneynature: Wings of Life (Combo Pack) (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • Django Unchained (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • Dragon (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • Eclipse Series 38: Masaki Kobayashi Against the System (DVD)
  • Escapee (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • Everybody Loves Raymond: The Complete Ninth Season (DVD)
  • Future Weather (DVD)
  • Gilmore Girls: The Complete Series Collection (DVD)
  • Iron Man: Rise of the Technovore (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • Jackie Chan: Police Story / Police Story II (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • Not Suitable for Children (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • Repo Man (Criterion Collection) (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • Spies of Warsaw (DVD/Blu-ray)
  • State of Emergency(DVD)







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